Notching up more than 1.5 lakh placements in the last 22 years, Genius Consultants provides services for temporary staffing, recruitment and background check, among others, clocking over R600 crore turnover last year. Chairman and managing director RP Yadav speaks to FE’s Surya Sarathi Ray on India’s labour market and how the country can reap its demographic dividend.
The advanced estimates peg the current fiscal’s growth rate at 7.6%. If materialises, this will be the highest rate of growth in the last five years. Does it find reflection in the job market?
If this happens, it will be the highest rate of GDP growth in the world surpassing even China. This growth is due to an augmented manufacturing production and rise in robust infrastructure. Sectors like IT/ITes and hospitality are experiencing tremendous growth. This will certainly generate a substantial job market.
What needs to be done to reap demographic dividend? Will the proposed labor reforms help generate and boost employment?
India is a large country. The government needs to focus and target on each zone’s strengths and core competencies. For example, the eastern region must focus on sectors like tea, jute, food processing, steel and coal, whereas the western region requires focus on chemicals, manufacturing, textiles, BFSI sectors, etc. Thus, by focusing on demographic USPs, one can create a positive growth impetus reflecting on the job market also. The proposed labour reforms will definitely boost employment as companies will opt more for organised employment rather than unorganised contracting. Multinationals will like to invest further in India in labour-incentive fields such as BPOs, KPOs, etc.
Experts often say that Indian universities have so far largely failed to ensure employability. How can this be rectified?
India has 740 universities in total comprising central, state, deemed and private universities with approximately 2,93,72,937 students. So far, there has been definitely a success ratio in creating a large pool of students but there is failure in creating 100% employable pool of talent. This is because the curriculum is not skill-based, if that was so, the current crop of students could use their honed skills to grab apt openings and opportunities. Employability can be improved by redesigning the curriculum into a skill-based format and introduce faculties from the real business world.
India has no dearth of talent, but identifying it and honing its skill is a persistent problem in the country. How can this be rectified?
India has a huge reservoir of educated workforce. However, this manpower lacks proper skill sets. The initiative ‘Skill India’ is a step taken in the right direction. The more we skill the prospective workforce, the more their ‘employability quotient’ rises. In fact, I would suggest it is time to make universities on skill-based factors besides degree-based options.
The government is thinking of making a minimum wage for the unorganised sector mandatory. What should be the limit?
India already has minimum wages for unskilled, semi-skilled and skilled workers. I think the same should be applicable for the unorganised segment also. It is a major challenge though to implement it in the unorganised sector, because this sector does not come under any regulations for lack of any kind of registration processes by concerned authoritative bodies.
How more women could be brought into the job market?
Maximum number of domestic helps, maids, ayahs, nurses are women. Unfortunately, this sector is completely unorganised, thus they are not counted in the actual job market. If the government takes accurate measures and enterprise to bring them into the organised sector, it will progress the ratio of working women in today’s vibrant job market scenario. Besides, the government already has taken initiative for free education for the girl child, especially in rural and semi–urban areas. This will certainly uplift women workforce’s participation in the job market.